Attleboro, MA – The Minot Minotauros sent six players to the 2020 NAHL Top Propsects Tournament with two players selected to the Central Division team and four selected to the NAHL Selects Blue squad. The Central Division team featured Tauro captain Cole O’Connell and Jay Buchholz; Ben Garrity was also selected for the team but became ineligible for the divisional team once he committed to NCAA DI Wisconsin. The NAHL Selects Blue team was chosen by NHL Central Scouting and featured Kyler Kleven, Dan Russell, Sam Skinner, and Owen Baumgartner.
Each team played two games over the event. On Monday all of the Tauros were in action in the same contest at Team Central topped the NAHL Selects Blue 6-4 and the Tauros were all over the scoresheet. Buchholz picked up the first Tauro point with an assist in the first on Tyler Watkins’ goal that made it 2-0 Team Central. O’Connell then picked up a helper in the second when he set up Bismarck’s Daniel Chladek who scored to make it 3-1. Buchholz should have been credited with an assist when he started the passing play with Austin’s Hugh Quinn and Watkins that eventually set up Watkins’ second of the game to make it 4-1 Team Central. The NAHL Selects Blue tried started to come back with two quick goals in the first minute of the third, the second of which was scored by Russell and assisted by Skinner. But it was O’Connell killing the comeback effort by scoring exactly four minutes after Russell had to make it 5-3 Team Central.
On Tuesday the Tauros on both Team Central and the NAHL Selects Blue were held off the scoresheets as the Selects Blue fell to Team East 3-1 and Team Central defeated Team South 5-4. Overall Team Central and Team East each went 2-0-0, Team South and NAHL Selects Red went 1-1-0, and Team Midwest and the NAHL Selects Blue went 0-2-0.
Now all 106 players that played in the NAHL Top Prospects Tournament return home to their teams as the run to the Robertson Cup Playoffs hits the final sprint. In the Central the Tauros sit in third place 11 points behind first place Aberdeen and four points behind second place Bismarck. The Tauros have a three point cushion on fourth place Austin and 12 points ahead of fifth place Minnesota. The Tauros have this weekend off before hosting the Aberdeen Wings on February 28th and 29th on the Pepsi Rink at Maysa Arena; tickets for both games are still available through the “Tickets” tab atop this page.